MX vs. ATVTHQ is excited about its new business model that could offer cheaper, and even free, video games. The catch? Hundreds of dollars worth of downloadable content. Genius!

News Blips:

THQ CEO Brian Farrell discusses the company's plans to sell stripped-down video games for a lower price point to attract more customers while offering upwards of $100 in downloadable content to satisfy more interested players. The company will launch its new model next year with the latest installment in its MX vs. ATV series of racing games. "We're coming out initially with a smaller game at a lower price point — the $29 to $39 range," Farrell told attendants of the Goldman Sachs Communacopia Conference in New York. "We're then doing a download model for different modes, different tracks, different vehicles. It's what we call a hybrid — it's a bit of the microtransaction and DLC model." Farrell said he sees a model of this type as the future of the industry. I see it as a bunch of expensive demos. [CVG]

Sony's latest PS3 firmware update prevents numerous third-party controllers and peripherals, including licensed products, from working with the console. Among the affected products are MadCatz' officially licensed controllers, USB flash drives, and adapters designed to use controllers from other consoles. Sony issued a statement warning customers to be wary of unofficial products as they could be unsafe. "It is possible that some counterfeit product may ignite or explode, resulting in injury or damage to the user, your PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system, or other property." I always doubted the commercials, but it looks like the PS3 really does do everything–even explode. [GamesIndustry.Biz]

Nintendo comfirms Artoon's upcoming FlingSmash will come bundled with an upgraded controller called "Wii Remote Plus." FlingSmash, a mix between tennis and pinball, uses Wii MotionPlus to provide a greater degree of control, and it's speculated that the Wii Remote Plus is simply a Wii Remote with a built-in MotionPlus accessory. Nintendo told Eurogamer the remote is real and bundled with FlingSmash, adding, "We have nothing to announce on this at the moment." They could have also announced that FlingSmash will have an inevitable meteoric rise to the top of the sales charts like Wii Play before it, but I guess they were busy that day.

Former Ubisoft Art Director Jonathan Jacques-Belletête tells CVG the company had worked on a now-canceled Prince of Persia game set in modern times. "[Ubisoft] really wanted something completely out of the left field," he said. "Think a bit Day After Tomorrow, but replace the snow with sand and everything." Pretty soon, everyone will forget about adding zombies to their games and opt for modern settings instead. Thanks a lot, Call of Duty!

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